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Genghis Khan was the successful emperor who led the Mongol empire. He conquered an immense amount of land and helped the Mongols reach new heights. In the book Genghis Khan and the Making of the Modern World, the author Jack Weatherford claims that Genghis Khan “laid the foundations of the political, commercial, and military institutions of our modern society”. I agree with Jack Weatherford’s claim if Genghis Khan never took part in the Mongol empire the world today would look very different. Genghis Khan had a big impact on the modern world, he improved the military and created new tactics used for warfare. He also dominated the silk route and established a postal system that allowed for better communication. He created laws that were passed down to future generations. Everything that has happened in the past, helps shape the world today, and without Genghis Khan, the modern world would not be the same.
Genghis Khan’s powerful military plays a major role in today’s society. His strong military was the leading force that conquered land and kept the state safe. The Mongol army consisted of young males, Genghis appointed his loyal men to higher positions. Genghis Khan was different compared to other rulers, he cared for his soldiers and would never sacrifice them to die; he wanted to “preserve Mongol life”. Mongol army was unique, organized and tightly formed; they did not follow the regular traditions of the armies. They traveled very lightly, survived off little food and used cavalry instead of foot soldiers. This set them apart from other militaries during that time. During the development of the tank in the twentieth century, the military got inspiration from the Mongols unique use of cavalry. The military used cavalry to help them fight better during tank warfare. The fighting in tank warfare could have gone in a completely different direction if it was not for Genghis Khan. Furthermore, Genghis Khan established brilliant warfare tactics that were not used before, this shaped how the modern world uses warfare tactics. For example, one tactic Mongols used to defeat the enemy was creating fear and confusion, then destroying outside cities to trick them into believing their city would not be attacked. This tactic was very successful and allowed Mongols to capture the land. Genghis Khan’s war tactics were seen again during World War 2. The Soviets, Japanese and Germans were all intrigued by the Mongols military strategies and wanted to incorporate them into their military. The Soviets took the Mongol strategies and put their own twist on it during World War 2. It’s clear that his military still plays a role in warfare today.
In addition, Genghis Khan made tremendous improvements to trade and communication. He created a postal system that allowed messages to be easily relaid. Today’s society still has postal systems that deliver packages and mail for easier communication. For Genghis Khan to have his law known, he created a writing system. The writing system was based on the Uighur language, this new writing system was easy for the Mongolian people to understand. He also transformed the trading system, by re-routing the Silk Route, making it all “one large stream” which allowed for easier trade. The Mongols distributed a great number of goods including silk, blankets, makeup, medicine, etc. The expansion of trade grew immensely over the years, even after Genghis Khan’s death, his grandson Khublian Khan continued to build upon his commercial success. Khublian created more manufacturing opportunities for China, connected routes and transported goods faster than ever. Countries today are able to transport trade smoothly and manufacture various products, this is all due to Genghis Khan.
Furthermore, Genghis Khan’s political standpoint paved the way for modern society today. He created “the great law”, it was a set of laws used to remain order in his nation. His laws were different compared to others in history. The laws included abolishing enslavement, adultery, theft, and animals rusting, etc. Animal and hunting laws were changed as well, to make sure animals were only killed for the things they needed. He also allowed his people to choose what religion they wanted to worship. His religious tolerance is very important because it allowed other religions to be spread which greatly impacted the world today. In today’s society, we still have similar laws in place, obviously over time they change a bit but Genghis Khan set a standard. Not only did civilians follow these rules, but Genghis also did too, which was never seen before in past rulers. This is crucial to modern society today because he changed the way rulers are held to responsibility. In America, the president is still responsible for following laws even though he has some control over them.
The modern world is shaped by all the previous ideas, inventions and experiences of past generations. Society learns from past mistakes and achievements and builds upon them. Ancient civilizations have made a big impact on the world today, they created languages, mathematics, medicine, laws and more. Their inventions and ideas have lead us to expand and create more. Previous civilizations have formed the world’s outlook on politics, the military, and the economy. In order for modern society to grow and prosper, we must look at history.
In conclusion, Jack Weatherford proved his claim that Genghis Khan shaped modern society. He made political contributions like creating laws that were passed down for generations to come. He also impacted the economy, connecting trade routes and allowing better communication. Genghis Khan has immensely impacted the military, he created warfare tactics that are still being used and set a basis for how the military should perform. The modern society would not be as civilized if it was not for the past. Genghis Khan’s legacy still lives on far after his death, and he will always go down in history for the remarkable contributions he made to the modern world.
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